Pregnenolone is a supplement that everyone should read about. It has helped me by increasing mood, motivation, and brain function. Pregnenolone feels like a steroid for the brain to me.
- My Experience and What I Use
- The Good
- 1) Pregnenolone is a Nootropic and Boosts Cognitive Function
- 2) Pregnenolone Improves Learning and Memory
- 3) Pregnenolone Stimulates Deep Sleep
- 4) Pregnenolone Relieves Schizophrenia Symptoms
- 5) Pregnenolone Boosts Mood and Relieves Depression
- 6) Pregnenolone is Anti-Anxiety
- 7) Pregnenolone Balances the Immune System
- 8) Pregnenolone Increases Libido (Anecdotal)
- 9) Pregnenolone Reduces Alcohol Preference and Intake
- 10) Pregnenolone Kills Brain Cancer cells
- 11) Pregnenolone Protects from Cannabis Intoxication
- The Bad
- Safety of Pregnenolone
- Pregnenolone Dosage
- What Else Increases Pregnenolone?
- Pregnenolone Goes Well With
- When to Take Pregnenolone
- Pregnenolone on SelfDecode
- Buying Pregnenolone
Pregnenolone and its sulfate (pregnenolone sulfate) are excitatory neurosteroids – they stimulate the brain (R).
Ever since the 1940s, pregnenolone was reported to have anti-stress and mood-elevating effects on factory workers, students, and pilots (R).
Pregnenolone is the main precursor of many other steroid hormones (R). For example, pregnenolone increases the level of other neurosteroids such as pregnenolone sulfate and allopregnanolone.
Like most products that can’t be patented, pregnenolone doesn’t have large clinical trials for various conditions. This is where Selfhacking comes in and testing out if pregnenolone works for you.
My Experience and What I Use
I’ve been taking pregnenolone for 3-4 years, on and off. I really love it. You need to find the right dosage. Pregnenolone doesn’t work for a lot of my clients. The most common issues with pregnenolone are that it gives people anxiety and they have more trouble sleeping.
For me, it will cause sleep issues if 1) I take too much and 2) I don’t exercise enough and 3) I don’t exercise enough earlier in the day. Exercise makes pregnenolone convert to other hormones to produce cortisol. If I exercise later in the day with pregnenolone, it makes me more wired than ordinarily (perhaps I have a larger cortisol spike).
I find when I was having chronic inflammation, I was deficient in pregnenolone. I’m not deficient now, but since I have a very heavy workload, I use more up, so in these times it’s useful.
1) Pregnenolone is a Nootropic and Boosts Cognitive Function
Pregnenolone increases the growth of neurons (R).
Pregnenolone enhances myelination, enhances the formation of new synapses, and has neuroprotective properties. Myelin is a fatty layer that electrically insulates nerves, and is essential for their proper functioning (R).
Pregnenolone sulfate enhances the survival of newborn neurons in adult mice (R).
Pregnenolone also improves neurological recovery (R).
Pregnenolone sulfate decreases the activity of GABAA receptors, kainate, and AMPA receptors and increases the activity of NMDA receptors (R). (This might be why pregnenolone increases anxiety in some.)
By regulating microtubules, pregnenolone may increase neuronal development and plasticity of neurons during aging (R).
2) Pregnenolone Improves Learning and Memory
Pregnenolone/pregnenolone sulfate results in better performance of mice and rats in various mazes (R).
Pregnenolone sulfate prevents learning and memory deficits induced by certain drugs (R).
Joe’s Experience: Pregnenolone boosts learning and memory for me.
3) Pregnenolone Stimulates Deep Sleep
Pregnenolone and its derivate allopregnanolone stimulate deep sleep in animal studies (R).
Low concentration of pregnenolone sulfate increased the amount of REM (paradoxical sleep), while high concentrations increased both REM and slow wave sleep (deep sleep) (R).
Pregnenolone increased the amount of time spent in deep sleep in human volunteers (R).
Deep sleep, in turn, helps consolidate memories.
Joe’s Experience: Pregnenolone is more likely to worsen your sleep than benefit it. I have found pregnenolone (at 50mg) delays sleep onset and results in less sleep for me. Other people also report insomnia from these doses.
4) Pregnenolone Relieves Schizophrenia Symptoms
Elevations in pregnenolone and allopregnanolone after pregnenolone treatment in schizophrenia were correlated with cognitive improvements (R).
Treatment with pregnenolone sulfate reduced schizophrenia-like symptoms and rescued the cognitive deficits in mice (R).
Pregnenolone reduced symptoms in patients with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder (R).
Low dose pregnenolone together with antipsychotics reduced drug-induced side effects in schizophrenic patients (R).
5) Pregnenolone Boosts Mood and Relieves Depression
Pregnenolone has significant mood-stabilizing effect (R).
Pregnenolone enhances the activation of neurocircuits that control emotion (R).
Blocking allopregnanolone impairs social and emotional functioning (R).
A synthetic pregnenolone derivative acts as an antidepressant in rats (R).
Depressive disorders are associated with neuronal abnormalities in brain microtubule function (R).
By increasing formation and stability of tubules, pregnenolone increases neurite growth (R) – and can combat depression.
Joe’s Experience: Pregnenolone boosts mood and motivation quite a bit. In fact, it increases mood and motivation more than anything else I’ve tried.
6) Pregnenolone is Anti-Anxiety
Patients with general anxiety disorder have significantly lower levels of pregnenolone sulfate (R).
Joe’s Experience: Pregnenolone does have anti-anxiety effects, but I’ve had some clients tell me it increases their anxiety. For me, it makes me more emotional and more passionate. This includes good and bad emotions. For example, a breakup would feel worse if I’m taking pregnenolone, but you are more likely to fall in love, in my experience.
7) Pregnenolone Balances the Immune System
Synthetic pregnenolone derivatives act as antiviral agents against Herpes Simplex Virus (R).
Pregnenolone suppresses immune cells to restore immune balance (homeostasis) (R).
8) Pregnenolone Increases Libido (Anecdotal)
I haven’t seen any studies with libido and pregnenolone, but I notice a difference and my clients often do.
9) Pregnenolone Reduces Alcohol Preference and Intake
Pregnenolone treatment significantly reduces alcohol self-administration in rats (R).
10) Pregnenolone Kills Brain Cancer cells
Pregnenolone induces glioma cell death (R).
11) Pregnenolone Protects from Cannabis Intoxication
Pregnenolone protects the brain from cannabis intoxication (R).
1) Pregnenolone Can Impair Memory
Allopregnanolone impaired learning in rats (R).
2) Pregnenolone Can Reduce Wakefulness
Pregnenolone sulfate promotes sleep and can impair wakefulness (R).
Safety of Pregnenolone
Studies conducted in the 1940s and 1950s showed that pregnenolone at 25–500 mg/day was safe and well tolerated in humans, with minimal side effects, and did not affect weight, heart rate, blood pressure, menstrual cycle, or glucose levels (R).
Pregnenolone is very safe as far as toxicity.
Generally, if you do get a side effect from pregnenolone, you can stop taking it and it will go away. I’ve never heard of permanent negative effects.
I recommend starting out with 5mg if you’re healthy and make sure to pay attention to your sleep.
If you have schizophrenia or chronic inflammation, you will want to take 25mg a day (if your doctor thinks it’s a good idea).
What Else Increases Pregnenolone?
- THC, the main active component of marijuana, substantially increases the production of pregnenolone (R)
- Stress (R)
- SSRIs and Antipsychotic drugs used for treating depression and bipolar disorder: clozapine, olanzapine and fluoxetine (Prozac) elevate pregnenolone levels in the brain and blood of rats (R).
Pregnenolone Goes Well With
Pregnenolone goes well with aromatase inhibitors so that it doesn’t convert to estradiol.
My favorite aromatase inhibitors include:
When to Take Pregnenolone
I recommend taking it right upon awakening and exercising in the morning and an empty stomach – so that it gets absorbed quicker.
Pregnenolone on SelfDecode
There are many dosages of pregnenolone you can buy. You can either buy a smaller amount or larger amount and break up the capsule.